Recently I painted my first couple hundred points of Eldar after talking about starting an army for quite some time. Last night they made their first appearance, battling Jason’s Chaos Marines. He’s also got his own battle report.
I only have about 300 points of Eldar finished at the moment, so I figured I’d ally them with some Kingbreakers Space Marines to make up 1000 points. At the same time, I wanted to debut a captain and squad of Legion of the Damned that Alex painted for me in our club’s secret servitor this past holiday season. They even have their own little bit of fluff that Alex wrote to tie them into the chapter’s story:
Captain Nitrol is one of the oldest veterans of the Kingbreakers, a survivor of the fall of Forestway. On multiple occasions he has been all but mortally wounded in combat and thought lost, only to be rescued at the last moment by the timely appearance of the Legion of the Damned. What faith keeps him going? What power ensures his survival?
The overtones at the end are especially dark given the chapter’s surge in psykers after Forestway was lost to Chaos and exterminatus, as well as the ongoing plight of the captured and possessed Sergeant Titus. Rumors and theories abound of the Kingbreakers’ ultimate destiny!
In any event, I thought my army would wind up a bit of a random hodgepodge from being built on those two elements and only 1000 points. But it actually wound up kind of interesting, with some reasonable strategic rationale:
- Kingbreakers (Salamanders)
- Captain Nitrol (unnamed captain w/ artificer armour, plasma pistol, mastercrafted powerfist)
- Legion of the Damned x5 w/ mastercrafted combi-grav, plasmagun, heavy bolter
- Squad Harbinger (Tactical Marines x5 w/ veteran sergeant, mastercrafted boltgun, combi-melta, meltagun) w/ Razorback
- Predators x3 w/ autocannons, heavy bolter sponsons
- Guardian Defenders x10 w/ scatter laser heavy weapons platform
- Guardian Defenders x10 w/ scatter laser heavy weapons platform
- Windriders x3 w/ scatter lasers
My thoughts in building from those two arbitrary cores were:
- The Eldar bring cheap, mobile units to hold objectives. No Objective Secured because the list is completely unbound, but I still need warm bodies after all. The jet bikes are obviously super mobile. But the Guardians are no slouches either with their ability to run and shoot/shoot and run. So the Guardians are tasked with holding home objectives or nearby markers, while the Windriders hopefully swoop in at the end to claim or contest in the enemy’s zone.
- The scatter lasers and Predators bring a bunch of mid-strength shooting that can really wreck a light vehicle or monstrous creature, both of which are common in our scene and probably in general at 1000 points. Note that the Predators have a special rule granting Monster Hunter and Tank Hunter while all three are alive, which just furthers this thought.
- The Tactical Squad provides a unit for Nitrol to hide in while out in the open. Otherwise, he rides with them in the Razorback toward some contested midfield objective. Any actual close combat squad will wipe them out, but if it can be whittled down or the opposition is less combat oriented, they’re reasonably able to get stuck in and prevail. Meanwhile the Legion of the Damned hang out in the warp and eventually come down to help them out.
Jason on the other hand brought a cohesive, balanced Nurgle list, something like:
- Nurgle Champion
- Plaguemarines w/ meltas
- Vulture Legion (Chaos Space Marines)
- Fly Lord (some kind of Nurgle flying daemon prince)
- Chaos Spawn (some kind of Nurgle blobby thing)
- Plague Drone
- Nurglings x3
- Nurglings x3
After much back and forth about missions we eventually settled on 3 objectives and straight 12″ deployment zones on a fairly dense 4×4 board.
Out on patrol, a small exploratory force of Eldar are startled by a bulbous daemon schlubbing its way nonchalantly across a clearing in an abandoned Imperial town.
With no reinforcements of their own to call on and fearing a Nurgle infestation, the Eldar entreat a nearby force of Space Marines to come assist. Their hatred of the Plague Lord’s minions overcoming their aversion to the xenos themselves, the Kingbreakers accede to the request. Captain Nitrol and Squad Harbinger mount up with a small mechanized task force to go assess the situation. Once on site, the mission escalates immediately as a gigantic insectile horror crashes into their tank column, obliterating the Predator leading the way.
The Kingbreakers and Eldar rapidly focus their combined firepower on the beast, taking it down. It’s now clear however that the threat is severe. Guardians retreat to defensive positions, while Nitrol and the jet bikers move deeper into the town. Several transports of the traitor legions rapidly appear, but are also blown away by sheer volume of fire. Out of the flames though jump Plague Marines and a squad of the Vulture Legion. The Plague Marines come head on at Nitrol, while the Chaos Marines attempt to flank the Eldar. Their efforts are supported by torrents of pestilence vomited forth by a Plague Drone come to protect the mewling spawn.
With Nitrol’s rash position at the center of the battle already threatened on all sides by monsters and heavy infantry, the Kingbreakers are momentarily troubled by the wisps of eldritch flame arising forward of their location. Concern turns to relief, however, as the legendary Legion of the Damned emerge from the light, pouring heavy bolter and plasma fire into the Plague Marines. The traitors and their daemon kin are forced to concentrate on the new threat.
The ghostly warriors can only stand the combined assault for so long, but their intervention grants Squad Harbinger and the Windriders a critical moment to recover and provide long range fire support against the Vulture Legion encroaching on the Guardians’ rearward positions.
With their primary flanking threats dispatched, the Eldar and Predators divide their attentions. Scatter lasers snipe the blubbering Chaos Spawn that prompted the battle, while shurikens and heavy bolter fire shred Nurglings arisen amid the death and gore of the small but heated conflict.
The Plague Lord’s army all but cleansed from this corner of the materium, Captain Nitrol and Sergeant Harbinger are left chasing after Papa Nurgle’s champion that orchestrated the infiltration. His vast bulk crashing through the detritus of the town, the Emperor’s warriors finally run the traitor to ground atop a dump yard of broken supply containers, their contents spoiled and reeking. The heaving wreck barely recognizable as a once-human form, Nitrol pulps it back to the Warp with a momentous swing of his power fist.
Three cowering Nurglings keep the Kingbreakers from a full table sweep, but the town is secured and the Eldar and Space Marines part the best of friends…
I didn’t know for sure I’d be fighting Jason on Sunday, but I have to confess I was thinking of his usual armies as I put together this list. The end result has a fair amount of S5–S7 shooting, with a good balance of strength versus quantity of shots to go against his Rhinos and monstrous creatures. In particular, the decision to take the third Predator for the Monster Hunter/Tank Hunter bonus was made in that light. That didn’t do all that much in the end as his Daemon Prince poofed one of them right away, but it helped shred the Plague Marines’ Rhino well away from my home objective. The scatter lasers also did a great job with those kinds of targets. All in all, at several critical points I was able to concentrate a lot of solid firepower to take out targets like those and the Plague Drone.
One big mistake I made was I got sloppy with the Windriders and let them get assaulted toward the end of the match. I thought the Legion of the Damned were going to keep the Plague Marines and Chaos Spawn tied up in combat for another turn, so I had moved the Windriders close in order to get shots down a firing lane across the table and onto the Vulture Legion, while also moving them toward Jason’s home objective. The Damned crumpled that turn though, and Jason was immediately able to consolidate and make an easy charge on the jet bikes in his turn. That left me without any real option to go after both the mid-table and enemy objectives, so I would have been in trouble if I’d lost either mine or the mid-table.
All in all it worked out though and this list seemed a lot more capable than I was initially thinking. Don’t forget to check out Jason’s battle report, while Captain Nitrol and his Eldar friends await further action!